What would you like Perspectives to be?

Barry Trachtenberg

University at Albany

Perspectives will face interesting challenges as it moves to an online format. As we saw by the small number of Twitter posts related to the 2013 conference, many AJS members (including myself) haven't yet embraced many of the new forms of information technology. While the online version of Perspectives might not fully replace the paper magazine, a major task is to create a website that will be of continual interest to readers, as opposed to simply a place where members can read the issue when it released twice a year.

I'd be interested in seeing Perspectives become a hub for discussions, information, and resources related to Jewish Studies more broadly and not restricted to AJS members only. This might mean taking some of the content that is currently on the AJS website and moving it to Perspectives online. For example, the online version could have job postings, fellowship and grant information, and research opportunities. It might also include moderated forums that would allow members to have genuine conversations with one another about the published articles in Perspectives as well as other topics within Jewish Studies. Perhaps discussions that began at the annual conference could be continued in the online forums. There could be conversations about recent books, articles, films, music, and exhibitions, as well as on career development, graduate programs, politics, teaching strategies, and so on.

Perspectives online could contain links to H-Net reviews and feature invited blogs. It could provide links to news stories related to Jewish Studies from around the web.

Such features would make the online site a place to visit Perspectives more than twice a year when the new edition of the magazine appears, and would highlight the continuing relevance of our field.